I’ll keep my question short. If you believe that the 7 day creation is simply figurative, why isn’t everything in the Bible chalked up to being figurative? Was Jesus crucified and rose 3 days layers? Why not 3 billion years?


I would say that for probably 98+% of the Bible it is clear when it is intended to be taken figuratively or literally. For example, when it says that David killed Goliath, it means that David killed Goliath. When it says that Israel crossed the Red Sea, it means that Israel crossed the Red Sea. When the Bible says that we should not get drunk, it is speaking literally. On the other hand, there are a great many situations in which the Bible should be taken figuratively. For example, when Jesus said about the Pharisees that they strain out the gnat and swallow the camel, he was speaking figuratively. When he said at the judgment day that God will separate the sheep from the goats, he was speaking figuratively. The majority of Revelation is to be taken figuratively, but virtually all of the book of Acts is to be taken literally. Much of David’s poetry is metaphorical, but virtually all of Nehemiah is literal. Obviously, the resurrection of Jesus and the three days in the tomb is intended to be taken literally as the gospel writers talk about the disciples touching Jesus and Jesus eating fish. Your implication that allowing the seven days of creation to be metaphorical in their time duration brings into question whether anything at all in the Bible is to be taken literally is simply not correct.  It is one of those slippery slope arguments which is not a valid one in my opinion.

This brings us to the “days” of Genesis. I discuss this in great detail in my book “Is There a God?” ( This is one of those relatively rare passages in the Bible where well-informed, scholarly, godly believers have debated whether the time period is to be interpreted literally or figuratively. Clearly, this is a debatable one and you will have to decide for yourself what your conclusion is. However, the fact that there is a tiny portion of the Bible in which there us legitimate question of whether it should be taken figuratively or literally does not undermine in the least the literal implication of the feeding of the 5000, the offering by Abraham of Isaac and the resurrection of Jesus.

Apparently, you have seen that I favor the metaphorical day/age interpretation. I have some very good reasons for doing so and I hope you will consider those reasons, but I do not have a problem with those who think differently on this. This is not a salvation issue. Neither does it impact our overall view of the Scripture significantly

John Oakes


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